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Iran: 15 Persons Killed In Plane Crash

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Iran: 15 Persons Killed In Plane Crash

Fifteen persons have died in a crash involving a Boeing 707 military cargo plane in the west of Tehran, Iran. A flight engineer survived and was taken to hospital for treatment.

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The cargo plane carrying meat from Bishkek had an emergency landing at faith airport,

The aircraft had caught fire after it skidded off a runway and crashed into a wall separating the airport from a residential neighbourhood.

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Iranian media say seven bodies from the crash had been recovered.

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Regional Economic Summit Lebanon Overshadowed By Divisions

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Regional Economic Summit Lebanon Overshadowed By Division

A Regional Economic Summit Lebanon is preparing to host this weekend has been overshadowed by divisions over Syria’s future and efforts to contain Iran.

Many heads of state now say they will stay away.

The Emirs of Qatar and Kuwait will not attend, Egypt is planning to send the prime minister rather than the president, while the Palestinian authority president has said he will be in New York.

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The snub seems to be a message to Iran, whose allies, including Hezbollah, hold power in Lebanon and support the Syrian government.

Iran’s allies saw the talks as an opportunity to bring Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad back into the Arab fold.  They were hoping an Arab league foreign minister-level meeting before the summit would provide a chance to hold a vote on Syria’s reinstatement to the regional body.

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The Arab league suspended Syria’s membership in 2011 and imposed economic sanctions over its violent crackdown on anti-government protesters before the country descended into civil war. Some countries withdrew their ambassadors.

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France To Ban Wearing Of Masks At Protest

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France To Ban Wearing Of Masks At Protest

France has banned masks at protests in the country and says protesters who break the ban would be jailed.  This is in response to recent weeks of violent demonstrations by the “yellow vest” movement.

Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said, proposed legislation would target people who try to hide their identities while taking to the streets.

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His announcement follows weeks of anti-government protests which were sparked by a planned hike in gas taxes and have since morphed into a rebuke of President Emmanuel Macron’s policies.

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Masks have been confiscated by police officers at some “yellow vest” protests. The legislation would allow perpetrators to be sent to jail. At the moment, the offense is considered more minor and is punished with a fine.

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Philippe said the proposed law would result in troublemakers, instead of taxpayers, being forced to pay for property damaged during demonstrations.

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DRC Election: Catholic Church Warns Against Release Of Manipulated Results

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DRC Election: SA and Zambia Urges CENI To Speedily Release Result

The Catholic Church in the Democratic Republic of the Congo has warned the country’s electoral commission against releasing results that do not reflect the will of the people in December’s presidential elections.  The church says such could lead to a popular “uprising.”

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The church had sent a letter to the electoral commission a day before Sunday’s scheduled announcement of results.  That exercise has now been delayed by a week.

The country is heavily catholic; so, the church has a strong voice there.  It had assigned around forty thousand electoral observers in all polling centers, but only the electoral commission is authorized to announce results.

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The commission says the church’s pronouncements could incite an “uprising.”

DRC’s ruling party has called the church’s stance, quote: “irresponsible and anarchist,” end quote.

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